We are pleased to announce Woman to Woman, our first group exhibition of the year where we present a curated selection of international female creators and their differing proposals and practices.
When it comes to the question of What is a woman? additional interrogations should arise. A small exercise may demonstrate the all too common mistake of offering reductive answers: What is an artist? These inquiries are not simple philosophical examinations for the curious; they serve as navigation tools in the attempt towards acknowledging and understanding the complexities that exist behind their subject.
We currently question the relevance of our binary denominations (man/woman, female/male), which are considered by many as reductive labels that limit the wealth of possibilities that nature offers and our sexuality reaffirms. We indeed live on a planet that, despite globalization being far from homogeneous, contemporary societies develop in distinct ways. Even with centuries of struggles for women's rights - when the ink has flowed to shed light on issues such as femininity, feminism, gender equality, health care, and more - women continue to demand their space in the world from their own incomparable and divergent realities. So we must further inquire: What do women look like? Where do they speak from and whom do they speak to? What are their struggles and how do these manifest? How and where do they present themselves? What do they represent? The questions are and should be, endless.
Reading the works presented in the exhibition from a hegemonic lens of an imposed reality would be a mistake. There is no possible comparison between works that are born with economic, political, religious, educational, social, and racial limitations like those that are born with barriers that have already been overcome. Unquestionably, they all continue to face questions that pertain to stereotypes, personal empowerment, visibility, and self-recognition. All women, whether conscious of it or not, purposefully or not, however similar or different, contribute to the construction of the concept/idea of woman, to their representation- to the overcoming of a social or discursive condition.
Woman to Woman is about discourse from within and in-between. With the artists and artworks present, the multiple narratives illustrate the initial question, What is a woman? but accentuate our continuous inquiries; the intricate and unfastened relationship between women and art. The exhibition does not look too forcefully interweave the artists and their practices but rather pushes the concept of gender freedom. Woman to Woman presents how being female does not come with a prescribed artistic position or confirmed identity. Woman to Woman refers to an internal conversation within each artist’s practice as well as the discourse that occurs between them as a collective. Only in the coexistence of dissimilar proposals within a singular space, can we come closer to understanding the various realities women face by demonstrating how they recognize themselves and each other as women, artists, and individuals.
STACEY GILLIAN ABE